Issue 270, April 9, 2007


In this issue:
Language lifting restrictions from Essayons and Yaquina proposed for House WRDA bill
Larry Paulson appointed to Governor�s Climate Advisory Team
Ninth Circuit Upholds Redden�s decision on 2004 BiO

Language lifting restrictions from Essayons and Yaquina proposed for House WRDA bill


A recently released manager�s amendment will accompany the House version of the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) when it goes to the floor later this month for a vote.  We are pleased to report that the manager's amendment contains PNWA�s supported language that would remove operating restrictions from the Essayons and Yaquina.  If the manager's amendment is accepted when the House votes on WRDA, this would put the House and Senate WRDA bills in agreement on the Essayons and Yaquina.

����������������

Nor�wester readers will remember that the House WRDA bill was reported out of the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee on March 29, 2007.At that time, the bill (H.R.1495) did not contain any language relating to the federal hopper dredge fleet. The manager�s amendment is important in that it signals that the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee is prepared to support PNWA�s language regarding the Essayons and Yaquina.In the past, the House WRDA bill has only included language calling for Corps studies of the dredge fleet, which have since been completed.A manager�s amendment typically accompanies major legislation to the floor, and includes additions and revisions that were left out of the original bill when it was introduced, prior to going through the committee process.

 

PNWA will be working closely with our West Coast members who serve on the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee and the Senate Environment & Public Works committee to ensure that our Essayons and Yaquina language survives in the eventual WRDA conference committee and becomes law.To view PNWA�s WRDA documents, please visit www.pnwa.net.

 

While PNWA continues to lead regional efforts for the Essayons and Yaquina, we are also addressing several other issues in WRDA and the appropriations bills, including Columbia River jetties, lock and dam repairs, coastal port funding and permitting.


Staff Contact:
Kristin Meira

Larry Paulson appointed to Governor�s Climate Advisory Team


Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire has appointed Port of Vancouver Executive Director and PNWA President Larry Paulson to her Climate Advisory Team, which met for the first time on March 30, 2007. This team is charged with providing guidance to the Governor and her staff on policy and strategy in order to achieve the goals she established in Executive Order 07-02.

�We have all seen the science and we must increase our efforts to respond,� Gregoire said. �We have an opportunity in Washington to work together to find solutions that reduce our state contribution to climate pollution, move away from our dependence on foreign oil and grow a clean energy economy. I am grateful for the commitment of the advisory team members and look forward to the Climate Change Challenge recommendations.�

In February 2007, the governor outlined the challenges � in the form of an executive order � that climate change poses for Washington, and steps already being taken to limit it. The departments of Ecology and Community, Trade and Economic Development (CTED) were directed to build the Climate Advisory Team as the lead on this effort.

Paulson is the only representative of ports on the 21-person panel, and the only Southwest Washington member. Before joining the Port of Vancouver, he served as the primary attorney to the Port beginning in 1992 when he was with the law offices of Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt. In addition to his law career, Paulson rose from the enlisted to ranks to that of Brigadier General in the Oregon Air National Guard where his last position was Chief of Staff and Commander for the Air National Guard State Headquarters. He retired from the Oregon Air National Guard in 1999, after serving over 31 years.

Staff Contact:
Glenn Vanselow

Ninth Circuit Upholds Redden�s decision on 2004 BiO


The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals today upheld the U.S. District Court ruling that ordered the National Marine Fisheries Service to rewrite its Biological Opinion (BiOp) for the federal projects on the Columbia Snake River System. The 2004 BiOp was ruled invalid by Judge James Redden in May of 2005.

����������������

Progress on a new BiOp did not wait for this Court�s ruling. The federal agencies, the four Northwest states and the seven tribes who are parties to the lawsuit have been engaging in a collaborative effort to develop a new BiOp under the direction of Judge Redden. The federal agencies are due to make their proposed river operations public by May 21, 2007. Those river operations will be the subject of the new BiOp.

 

PNWA disagrees with attorneys for the plaintiffs who are quoted as saying the ruling bolsters environmentalists' arguments for removing the four lower Snake River dams. The Ninth Circuit opinion simply affirms Judge Redden�s invalidation of the 2004 BiOp. It makes no statements that indicate dam breaching is a viable solution.

 

The bottom line is that the breaching of the Snake River dams will not guarantee recovery of the fish and it may even do more harm than good. Other less extreme and less risky measures, both in place and planned, have been demonstrated to increase survival for listed fish both for juveniles migrating out of the river and for adults returning.

 

Click HERE for the Appellate Court�s decision. It is listed as 04/09/07, National Wildlife Fed v State of Idaho.

 

Staff Contact: Glenn Vanselow


Pacific Northwest Waterways Association                                www.pnwa.net

 

 

������������������������������������������������������������������������ ������������������������������������������������������������������������